Is pumping toothpaste the next trend in oral care?

Pumping toothpaste market is on a rising trend. Market penetration of pumping toothpaste is 9.6% at the moment, expecting to beat the 10% threshold sometime soon. Users of the products argue that they are 1) easy to use, 2) hygienic, and 3) efficient. Could pumping toothpaste become the next trend in oral care for 2020?

Steady seller in Korea, how about in China?

Domestic pumping toothpaste market started out with LG Household & Healthcare ‘Perio pumping toothpaste.’ LG H&H sold 15 million pumping toothpaste in 5 years from 2013 to 2018. With the release of the new product, Himalaya pink salt pumping toothpaste, in 2018, the two products together led the sales volume of the following years, reaching 10 million between July 2018 to June 2019. LG H&H says that pumping toothpaste is now a steady seller.

LG H&H successfully entered the Chinese market immediately after the launch of Perio pumping toothpaste in Korea in 2013 by using Song Joong-ki as a model. At the time, Perio pumping toothpaste sales in China exceeded 100,000 units a month, almost resulting in shortage of supply. On March 2018, after the launch of toothpaste that contains Himalayan pink salt, the company distributed both the tube and pump type dispensers in Watsons stores in China, triggering further growth momentum.

The no.1 brand in pumping toothpaste market(4Q19) in Tmall/Taobao platform is Hosjam, subsidiary brand of Guangdong Kangwang(广东康王). It occupies 37% of the pumping toothpaste market, with a big spread from the second place brand Dencare (M/S 9.7%). Colgate and Saky, conventional leaders of tube toothpaste market, also launched pumping toothpaste. LG H&H ranked 6th in the market (These data are based on period between October to December of 2019).

Figure1. Market share of top 10 brands in pumping toothpaste market | Source: MeasureChina

Penetration rate of pumping toothpaste reaches 10%, approaching growth phase

In the 4th quarter of 2019, toothpaste market sales on Tmall/Taobao platform was 620 million yuan, of which 9.6% was sales of pumping toothpaste(60 million yuan). If we interpret the 10% threshold as a signal of entering growth phase, now is a good time to expect further growth potential of pumping toothpaste market.

Benefits of pumping toothpaste? #convenience #hygiene #efficiency

Through text mining, we analyzed 4,000 postings on Xiao hong shu about pumping toothpaste, and summarized three reasons why consumers purchase this product: 1) convenience, 2) hygiene, and 3) efficiency.

(1) Tube type toothpaste requires opening the lid -> squeezing out the toothpaste -> and closing the lid again. But since pumping toothpaste is dispensed with just one little press on the lid, 30% of its users emphasized its quick and easy usage.

(2) Second benefit of pumping toothpaste is hygiene. Tube type toothpaste is vulnerable to moisture if the lid isn’t closed properly, and this could lead to a change in texture of the toothpaste and create molds. Due to the structure of pumps, the pumping toothpaste has least exposure to moisture. 15% of all postings recommended pumping toothpaste due to the hygienic side of the product.

(3) Last but not least, pumping toothpaste is efficient. One pump gives a fixed amount of toothpaste, and thus this can save excess usage of the product.

Limitations of this market

Pumping toothpaste’s biggest difference from conventional toothpaste is in its container. But this may also be the only strength of it. LG H&H, Colgate, and Saky all have both the tube and pumping type containers, so the ingredient or benefits of the product cannot be the crucial factor that affects purchase decisions.

If pumping toothpaste fails to have a competitive edge function-wise, then it will not be able to replace tube type ones. Unless the demand that was centered around tube types turns to pump types, the growth potential will clearly have its ceiling.

Popular toothpaste brands such as YNBY, DALIE, Crest, White&White(LION), and Zhonghua are still hesitant to enter pump type market. Pumping toothpaste surely provides a diversity of choice to consumers, but setting a clear advantage over tube type will be the biggest challenge for them.

As more brands jump into the market, pumping toothpaste players will see higher competition as well as higher growth momentum. We will see if pumping toothpaste successfully settles down as the next trend in oral care industry.

%d bloggers like this: